Friday, September 6, 2013

Big Dish 3: Chicken and Waffles

Greetings, HWYD Friends!

The HWYD dish of the week pleases everyone in the house. Who doesn't seriously LOVE fried chicken? Our HWYD Chicken and Waffles recipe has turned into everything from delicious and easy pita pockets to a decadent and unique tira misu. You'll love how flexible and reliably mouth-watering these recipes are!

As promised in our introductory post, we plan on sharing with you our many HWYD Big Dish recipes. As a refresher each week, we'll remind you of how our HWYD Big Dish system works:

Every week, we have an HWYD Big Dish. That dish is THE dish we build around for the week. We use it one of three ways:
  1. We actually just make a large portion of a HWYD Big Dish that we rework throughout the week, adding gourmet twists that make it practically unrecognizable from one meal to the next, or...
  2. We make a HWYD Big Dish that morphs into different phases throughout the week. A chicken for a  meal which becomes a broth which makes a tomato soup which creates a sauce, or...
  3. We make HWYD Big Dish components that come together in different ways throughout the week leading to the main attraction.

HWYD Big Dish System Goals:
  • There is only 1 main day of preparation for the week with no more than 10 steps. 
  • The grocery list will be at or under $200 for all meals for all members of the household for the week.
  • The meals are better tasting and better for you than going out to eat. 
  • So, you save time, money, calories and eat better!

The HWYD Big Dish Recipe of the Week is: 

HWYD Chicken and Waffles


7 Breakfasts
7 Lunches
7 Dinners

Portions for 7 Days: 
4 adults, or
3 adults and 2 children, or
2 adults and 4 children

Bottom Line:
21 meals for 4 adults = 84 meals = $2.38/meal
21 meals for 3 adults and 2 children = 105 meals = $1.90/meal
21 meals for 2 adults and 4 children = 126 meals = $1.59/meal

The prep day makes these meals fully interchangeable. 
Feel free to mix things up!
This menu is just a sample so you can preview the meals for the week.

Sample Menus for HWYD Big Dish 3:

Day 1
Breakfast: Waffles with brie and Dalmatia orange fig spread
Lunch: Poppy seed chicken popovers, peaches
Dinner: Chinese pork ravioli and noodle salad with mixed greens

Day 2
Breakfast: French toast waffles, plums
Lunch: Salmon croquettes with lemon dressing salad, buttered herbed couscous
Dinner: Chicken and Waffles, buttered spiced peaches

Day 3
Breakfast:  Decadent HWYD waffle breakfast banana split
Lunch: Tilapia with date-fig chutney and noodle salad
Dinner: Poppy seed Chicken, cauliflower dahl, cucumber salad

Day 4
Breakfast: Pork and egg scramble, plums
Lunch: Chicken pitas, date couscous
Dinner: Salmon salad and cheesy side bread

Day 5
Breakfast: Tilapia and couscous breakfast sauté
Lunch: Chinese meatballs and noodle salad
Dinner: Individual chicken casseroles, cauliflower dahl, cucumber salad

Day 6
Breakfast: Breakfast pita pockets, brie-stuffed dates
Lunch:  Fried chicken with amaretto peach glaze and noodle salad
Dinner: HWYD spicy lentil soup and banana pecan waffles

Day 7
Breakfast: Dahl omelet, banana
Lunch: Delicious brie and date stuffed pork patties with sweet sauce, mixed greens, peaches
Dinner: Salmon couscous, plums, HWYD Waffle Tira Misu


200$-or-Less Grocery List
Two inexpensive large family pack chicken thighs or other bone-in chicken
Approximately 40 oz  ground pork
Approximately 24 oz tilapia, cleaned
6 cans of salmon
One head of cauliflower
12 plums
7 peaches
2 -3 cups dates
6 large bananas
3-4 lemons
2 large cucumbers
2 -3 tomatoes
1 yellow pepper
1 bunch green onion
2 white onions
1 bulb of garlic
1 Napa or celery cabbage
1 family-size bag mixed greens
Bag of dried lentils
1 can of cream of mushroom soup
1 can chicken broth
1 package of pita bread
1 box of Ritz crackers
1 snack size cheddar or white cheddar Cheeze-its
1 box angle hair (or vermicelli or spaghetti) pasta
1 box plain couscous
1 jar of Dalmatia Orange Fig Spread
1 8 oz container sour cream
1 8 oz container mascarpone cheese
1 half gallon butter milk
2 small rounds of brie (in the wooden boxes)
Poppy seeds
Sesame seeds
1 bag of chopped pecans
peanut oil
sesame oil
soy sauce
rice vinegar (or white vinegar)
balsamic vinegar
white wine
1 bottle of pancake/waffle syrup of your choice
1 small bottle DiSaronno amaretto liqueur *Special package-store run.

Things you may already have on hand
cayenne pepper
Italian seasoning
garlic salt
olive oil
vegetable oil
orange juice
unsweetened cocoa
baking powder

Prep Day in Ten Steps:

Step 1 - Cauliflower Dahl
Chop 2 cups of white onion and mince 6 garlic cloves. Also chop 3 cups cauliflower and 2 cups tomatoes. In a large pot or saucepan with a lid, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a frying pan and sauté onions and garlic, adding 1 tablespoon powdered ginger, 1 tablespoon cumin, 1/2 tablespoon cayenne pepper. After 2-3 minutes, add the cauliflower and tomatoes. Add 5 cups water and 2 cups dried lentils. Cover and simmer 45 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon salt.

Step 2 - Bake the chicken
Heat oven to 425 degrees. Rinse one of the large family packs of chicken thighs or other budget-friendly bone-in meat. Remove skin. Place in a bowl and toss with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Place in baking dish and bake for 20-25 minutes. Start the noodle salad while the chicken is baking. When the chicken has browned, remove and place foil on dish. Let chicken rest until step seven.

Step 3 - Noodle salad
Boil entire box of vermicelli, angel hair, or spaghetti noodles on the stove. Break the noodles in half before placing into water. Add a teaspoon of salt and a tablespoon of sesame oil to the water. Remove and drain, allowing noodles to cool in a bowl. Toss with an additional tablespoon of sesame oil, 3 tablespoons orange, lemon, or lime juice, 3 tablespoons rice vinegar, and 2 tablespoons soy sauce. Chop 1/2 cup green onion stems and bulb and combine. When cool, cover and refrigerate.

Step 4 - Fry up the chicken
Rinse the other large family pack of chicken thighs or other budget-friendly bone-in meat.  Keep skin. Toss in a bowl with balsamic vinegar. In a separate bowl, combine a cup of buttermilk with one egg. In a third bowl, combine 2 cups flour, 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning, one tablespoon garlic salt, and one tablespoon fresh cracked pepper. Heat peanut oil on stove to medium-high. We use peanut oil because it has a very high burning point. It gives a great crust and doesn't burn to hurt the flavor. As you place to chicken in the oil, dip in the buttermilk mixture and dredge in the seasoned flour. With a full pan, you can expect to turn the chicken every 7-8 minutes or so, making sure each side is down in the oil twice. Remove once piece when it is fully golden brown and cut open to make sure the chicken is cooked through. When chicken is finished, drain on paper towels. While the chicken is cooking, you can go ahead and start the next step.

Step 5 - Chinese meatball-making
Chop up the whole head of Napa (celery) cabbage into small bites. Set in a bowl of water with one tablespoon salt. Chop about a cup of green onions. In a large bowl, combine about a pound and a half of the ground pork, two tablespoons white wine, one teaspoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon white pepper, two teaspoons cornstarch, two teaspoons salt, chopped green onions, and drained chopped cabbage. Hand mix and form into teaspoon-size balls. Store 20 balls in the refrigerator or freezer. For the remainder, coat a pan with sesame oil. Brown meatballs on each side for one minute each turn. Four turns is probably enough. Add 1/4 cup water and cover. Cook for five minutes, remove, and drain. Store in the refrigerator when cool.

Step 6 -  Spice the Pecans
Combine 2/3 cup brown sugar, 1/3 cup white sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon chili powder, and 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Mix well. In a glass dish, combine four tablespoons melted butter and the entire bag of chopped pecans to coat. Microwave for two minutes.  Pour the sugar mixture into the buttered pecans and stir well. Heat another three minutes. Spread pecans on waxed or parchment paper to dry. When cool, store in air-tight container in the pantry.

Step 7 -  Chicken Casserole
For the baked chicken, remove all chicken from the bone. In a bowl, combine one can of cream of mushroom soup with 8 oz sour cream. Add 2 cups of shredded chicken. Spread mixture in baking dish. Crush 1 1/2  rolls of Ritz crackers in a baggie. Add 1-2 tablespoons melted butter and 2-3 tablespoons of poppy seeds. Spread crumb mixture on chicken filling. Bake in a 350 degree oven until browned and bubbly. Remove, let cool, and store in the refrigerator.

Step 8 -  Couscous
Make entire box of couscous according to the directions on the package. Add salt and butter as directed. One removed but still hot, add 2 additional tablespoons of butter. Store 2/3 of the couscous. For the remaining couscous, (while still warm and moist), add 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon white pepper, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 cup chopped dates (seeds removed), and 1/2 cup of spiced pecans. Store in the refrigerator.

Step 9 -  Waffles!
In a mixing bowl, combine 4 cups flour, 3 tablespoons baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Separate 6 eggs. Combine yolks, with 1 and 1/2 cups vegetable oil, and five cups milk. Combine wet and dry ingredients to make waffle batter base. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold egg whites into waffle batter base. Halve the batter and store in the refrigerator. Make at least eight waffles with the remainder.

Step 10 -  Cucumber Salad
Slice one cucumber and 1/2 white onion. Place slices into storage container, and add rice vinegar, salt, and pepper, and enough water to submerge the slices. Cover and store in the refrigerator.

Great job!

You are ready for the week!

Have a glass of wine and relax.

Finishing Touches:


Waffles with brie and Dalmatia orange fig spread
     Warm two waffles in the oven on broil. Divide into quarters. Slice half a round of brie into wedges. Heat half a jar of orange fig spread in the microwave until it drizzles - maybe 30 seconds. Place two waffle quarters on each plate for adults and one for children. Garnish with fruit sauce and cheese. And maybe a few slices of fruit, like peaches.

French toast waffles, plums
     Remove two waffles and separate into quarters. Mix four eggs and a teaspoon of cinnamon in a small boil. Heat butter in a frying pan. Dip quarters into egg mixture and fry, turning once to brown both sides. Serve warm with fresh plums, syrup of your choice, and a dusting of powdered sugar if you have it.

Waffle maple banana split
     Remove two waffles from the refrigerator, divide into quarters, and roll flat with a rolling pin or side of a tall glass. Brush with melted butter and brown sugar and cinnamon and toast in the oven on broil, turning once. In a frying pan, slowly melt 3 tablespoons white sugar and 1 tablespoon brown sugar. Before the sugar burns, add 2 tablespoons butter, 2 tablespoons of amaretto liqueur, and 1 teaspoon cocoa powder, and 1 teaspoon orange juice. Reduce while slicing up two bananas. Sauté bananas in sauce until warm. Top waffle crisps with bananas and sauce. Add low fat vanilla ice cream if you want to have a real treat. The low fat is because it's breakfast, of course. Top with sugared pecans.

Pork and egg scramble, plums
     Sauté 4-6 oz. of the ground pork, adding 1/4 cup white onion, 1 tablespoon garlic salt, 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, and 1 teaspoon white pepper. Drain. Take 6-8 eggs, add milk, salt, and pepper, and whip up a scrambled egg base. Start the scrambled eggs, adding the pork mixture. Serve with fresh plums.

Tilapia and couscous breakfast sauté
     Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Rinse 3-4 tilapia fillets or about 12-16 oz. Spray/grease an ovenproof dish. Place fillets in the dish and drizzle fresh squeezed lemon, olive oil, garlic salt, and pepper. Remove tilapia and break into small pieces. Chop half a white onion. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil on stove, and sauté onion. Add half of stored plain couscous to warm. Chop one tomato and one yellow pepper and add to couscous. Cook until heated and pour out couscous mixture into bowl. Add tilapia to sauce pan with 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream and 1 tablespoon garlic salt. Cook no more than five minutes and serve over couscous. 

Breakfast pita pockets, brie-stuffed dates
    Scramble 6-8 eggs any way you choose. Heat 4-6 pita pockets in the oven. Stuff the warmed pockets with eggs. Rinse your dates, (about 16-20), and open them up. Stuff small cubes of brie into them. Enjoy!

Dahl omelet, banana
   Heat 1 1/2 cups of Dahl in the microwave or in a skillet. Select 4-6 eggs and combine milk, salt, and pepper as if you are making scrambled eggs. In a large skillet, sauté butter. Pour the egg mixture in on medium-low heat. As if firms, add one serving of dahl to each omelet, about a third of a cup. With a spatula, slide the omelet out of the pan onto a plate, flipping the other half over the filling. Serve with banana slices.


Poppy seed chicken popovers, peaches
     Grease a muffin tin and preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a bowl, combine 2 beaten eggs, 1/2 cup milk, and 1/2 tablespoon cooking oil. Add 1 cup flour and mix until smooth. Fold in one cup poppy seed chicken casserole. Fill six muffin tins half full with the popover mixture. Place muffin tin on cookie sheet and bake about 40 minutes. Remove and prick each popover with a fork. Serve with peaches.

Salmon croquettes with lemon dressing salad, buttered herbed couscous
     Drain two cans of salmon. Add four eggs and 1 cup crushed Ritz crackers. Press into eight patties. Sauté in olive oil for 4-5 minutes per side and drain on a paper towel. Add 2/3 cup heaving whipping cream and 1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice to pan. Reduce to a sauce. Heat buttered couscous in the microwave adding 1 tablespoon butter to return moisture. Serve salmon croquettes with couscous and small side salad made from the mixed greens and lemon dressing.

Tilapia with date-fig chutney and noodle salad
      Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat 1 cup water to boiling on stove. Rinse 3-4 tilapia fillets or about 12-16 oz. Spray/grease an ovenproof dish. Place fillets in the dish and drizzle fresh squeezed lemon, olive oil, garlic salt, and pepper. Check for flaking after 10 minutes. Remove after no more than 15 minutes. Chop up (and remove seeds if necessary) 1 cup of dates and boil until tender. Pour dates and water into food processor adding 1/2 jar of orange fig spread, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon black pepper, 1/4 teaspoon ginger, and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne. Blend down to a syrup. Strain and serve over tilapia with a side of cold noodle salad.

Chicken pitas, date couscous
     Take about 1 1/2 cups of shredded chicken and combine with mayonnaise, a dash of garlic salt, a dash of pepper, a dash of onion salt. Stuff 4-6 pitas with the chicken and mixed greens. Serve with date couscous cold or warm.

Chinese meatballs and noodle salad
     Serve meatballs and salad cold or warmed up in the microwave. Make a dipping sauce by combining equal parts soy sauce and sesame oil. Garnish with greens.

Fried chicken with amaretto peach glaze and noodle salad
     Heat chicken in the oven to crisp back up or just serve cold. On the stove, bring 3/4 cup water to a boil. Add one cup chopped peaches and 2 tablespoons amaretto. Reduce down. Add 1 teaspoon corn starch and 1 teaspoon sugar. Top chicken with peach sauce and serve with noodle salad.


Chinese Ravioli and noodle salad with mixed greens
    Remove 12 Chinese meat balls from the refrigerator. Boil 1/2 cup boiling water on stove. Pour boiling water into 1 cup flour. Mix until dough forms. Place dough between two pieces of floured waxed or parchment paper and knead. Don't knead by hand directly; it's hot and will stick to your hands. Form a roll of the dough and cut into 12 slices. Roll out 3-inch rounds, placing the meatballs in the center. Press the edges of the dough together and cook the same way you cooked the meatballs: Coat a pan with sesame oil. Heat ravioli on each side for two minutes each. Add 1/4 cup water and cover. Cook for five minutes, remove, and drain. Serve with cold noodle salad and mixed greens.Make a dipping and salad sauce by combining equal parts soy sauce and sesame oil.

Chicken and Waffles, buttered spiced peaches
     Heat 4-6 pieces of fried chicken in the oven along with two waffles. Half 2-3 peaches, removing skin and pit. In a frying pan, sauté 2 tablespoons of butter, adding the peaches, brown sugar, cinnamon, and ginger. Remove when tender. Serve chicken and waffles with a sauce or syrup of your choice with peaches on the side.

Poppy seed Chicken, cauliflower dahl, cucumber salad
     Reheat 6-8 cups of the poppy seed chicken casserole in the oven and 2 cups of dahl in the microwave or stove. Distribute onto plates and add a serving of cucumber onion salad.

Salmon salad and cheesy side bread
     Take 1 1/2 cups of waffle batter in refrigerator. Add 1/4 cup of milk, crushed snack bag of cheddar Cheeze-its, and 1 teaspoon garlic salt. Mix well. Make two or more cheesy waffles with batter. Divide into quarters. Open and drain two cans of salmon. Place on mixed greens and add dressing of choice. Serve with cheesy side bread.

Individual chicken casseroles, cauliflower dahl, cucumber salad
    Butter or grease 6-8 large ramekins. Crush 1 roll of Ritz crackers and combine with 2 tablespoons of softened butter and 1 tablespoon poppy seeds. Press a crust into the bottom of each of the ramekins. Spoon 1/2 cup or so chicken poppy seed casserole over the top of the crust. Cut 6-8 wedges of brie and remove rind. Insert one wedge into center of each ramekin. Heat in 350 degree oven until bubbly. Heat 1-2 cups of dahl on stove or in microwave. Plate ramekins and dahl and serve with a side of cucumber salad.

HWYD spicy lentil soup and banana pecan waffles
     Take 1 1/2 cups of waffle batter in refrigerator. Add 1/2 smashed banana, 1 tablespoon milk, 1/2 spiced pecans, and one teaspoon brown sugar. Mix well. Make two or more banana pecan waffles with batter. Divide into quarters. Heat 1-2 cups dahl. Add 1 can chicken broth, one teaspoon cayenne, and 1 teaspoon cornstarch. When thickened, serve spicy lentil soup with a side of banana pecan waffle. You'll be surprised how good it is dipped.

Salmon couscous, plums, HWYD Waffle Tira Misu
     Heat two waffles in oven and divide into quarters. In a bowl, combine 1 cup mascarpone cheese, 2 tablespoons amaretto, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1 teaspoon cold coffee if you have it, two egg yolks, 1/2 cup sugar. Layer waffle, filling, waffle, filling, and dust with cocoa. Place in the refrigerator until after the main course. Heat up 2 cups of couscous. Add one can of corn, boiled and drained, 1 tablespoon of butter, and a dash of salt. Stir in one can of salmon, and add fresh lemon and 1 teaspoon garlic salt. Plate with a side of fresh plums. Serve HWYD Waffle Tira Misu for dessert.

Happy Cooking!

Andrea and Steve

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